Updated: Wednesday, 22nd November 2017 @ 5:07am

Manchester's business women to sleep rough for homeless charity fundraiser

Manchester's business women to sleep rough for homeless charity fundraiser

| By Sophie-May Clarke

CEO Sleepout has arranged for a number of prominent women to sleep rough for charity in an event that will see business people stand up to fight poverty and homelessness in Manchester.

October is a time of year that a lot of people consider to be the start of the winter. It’s when we dig around in wardrobes and attics in search of thick hats and scarfs, ensuring we stay warm on the morning walk to work, often longing over the moment we can set foot back over the thresholds of our own homes, back into warmth and safety.  

Unfortunately, this isn’t the reality for everyone, and in 2016 there were an estimated 189 rough sleepers on the streets of Greater Manchester at any one time.

But now, CEO Sleepout is coming back to the city and encouraging high profile business men and women to ‘swap their briefcases for a sleeping bag, for one night only’ at Emirates Old Trafford on Monday, October 16.

The aim of the charity is to raise awareness of the homeless crisis across the country, something that CEO Sleepout founder Andy Preston believes can only be achieved through ‘joint-working’.

Mr Preston founded CEO Sleepout in 2013 and rolled the idea out across the country after two successful events were held at Middlesbrough FC and Newcastle United FC.

FUNDRAISERS: A who's who of the business world will be there

Speaking about the return of the fundraiser to Manchester, he told MM: “We’re really pleased to have a number of prominent women from around the city joining us for the Sleepout, who will help highlight the needs of women sleeping rough.

“This year we have had a great response from Manchester’s business community and other leading figures from the city’s civic life.”

One of those figures is Jenna Bowyer, a Business Intelligence Developer from Boohoo.com, who is one of the many women who will be taking to Old Trafford to sleep out for the night.

Talking about the event, Ms Bower described the plight of homeless women in Manchester and across the UK as a major issue.

She said: “Whilst most rough sleepers tend to be men, those that are women often have a different and perhaps worse experience of being on the streets, so it is important to highlight what they are going through and ensure that the right care is available for them.”

Another woman dedicating her time to the cause is Julie Wilson, co-founder of Media City-based company Rule 5.

Speaking about signing up, she said: “Homelessness is an issue close to my heart and I’m delighted to join an increasing number of women in this year’s sleep out, raising not only vital funds, but awareness of local charities such as MASH, who provide invaluable support to women living on the streets of Manchester.”

The CEO Sleepout event now takes place in eight locations across the UK, including Durham, Newcastle and London.

Since the inauguration of the event in 2013, CEO Sleepout has raised more than £1 million thanks to the support of the thousands of executives that participate in the event.

This far, over 100 business men and women from Greater Manchester have signed up to take part in the event. 

*You can find out more information on CEO Sleepout HERE.